Criteo forecast suffers under Apple’s iOS cookie prevention policy

Anne Freier | December 18, 2017

Mobile Advertising

It seems that Apple’s iOS overhaul may have had a big effect on some advertisers. Digital ad company Criteo’s shares dropped significantly following a recent revenue forecast, after the company acknowledged that it had underestimated the impact of Apple’s new iPhone iOS update on its business.


The latest version of Apple’s iOS includes Intelligent Tracking Prevention, which restricts advertisers from collecting user data. Companies such as Criteo tend to collect user data in order to target ads to the relevant audiences.


Originally, Criteo expected the new iOS to have a 9% to 13% net-negative impact on its revenue next year. However, the company recently updated its forecast and now estimates the impact to be 22%.

Whilst competitors such as Google have already announced that they would seek a solution in order to comply with Apple’s browser adaptations, Criteo said that it was also searching for a solution.

In a press release, it stated:

We are focused on developing an alternative sustainable solution for the long term, built on our best-in-class user privacy standards, aligning the interests of Apple users, publishers and advertisers. This solution is still under development and its effectiveness cannot be assessed at this early stage. Should it not mitigate any ITP impact, we believe the ITP net negative impact on Criteo’s 2018 Revenue ex-TAC, relative to our pre-ITP base case projections, would become approximately 22%.

According to Apple, the changes made do not actually block advertisements or otherwise restrict user data tracking that is legitimate.

Ultimately, the changes mean that the cookie will become an outdated way to track user data. This may have some positive effects on fraud prevention and help raise the bar on digital and mobile advertising standards.

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